Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Who Will The Chiefs Take In The First Round Of The 2012 NFL Draft? - Kansas City News

The first round of the 2012 NFL draft is only two days away, and the Kansas City Chiefs hold the 12th pick in the first round. Last season, injuries derailed a talented team that found itself with a decent shot at a playoff berth late in the season, but failed to capitalize and ultimately finished 7-9. Despite a solid young nucleus, the Chiefs still have several holes to fill entering the draft.

Arguably the biggest need for the Chiefs is at nose tackle, an essential position for the 3-4 scheme Kansas City runs. Last season, Kelly Gregg played well for the Chiefs, which was a big reason why Kansas City’s defense was stout all year. However, Gregg will not be back this year, and the Chiefs need to solidify this position for the future. Devon Still and Dontari Poe could be potential first round candidates for Kansas City, and there will be solid options in the second and third rounds as well. The Chiefs have a shaky history in regards to drafting defensive tackles, and Kansas City cannot afford to miss on another interior defensive lineman.

The Chiefs could also use some help defensively at inside linebacker, where the team needs a playmaker next to the dynamic Derrick Johnson. Jovan Belcher had a decent season for the Chiefs, but pairing Johnson with another Pro-Bowl caliber LB could make the Chiefs’ defense one of the best in the NFL. Many believe Kansas City will take Luke Kuechly of Boston College in the first round, who is graded by most draft scouts as the top inside linebacker prospect in the draft. The Chiefs may likely grab Kuechly and opt to address the NT spot later in the draft.

The Chiefs also could use an upgrade at guard, and Stanford’s David DeCastro will likely be available when the Chiefs are on the clock. DeCastro has been labeled by most as the best interior offensive lineman in the draft, and could solidify Kansas City’s line and start from day one. It is unlikely the Chiefs would take a flyer on any other Guards so early, and they may elect to add depth to their offensive line later in the draft.

It is hard to guess what Scott Pioli will do Thursday night. Conventional wisdom suggests the Chiefs GM will grab a DT, ILB or G, but Pioli has also expressed interest in acquiring Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill. The Chiefs are in a position to win now, and hopefully will find an impact player that helps put them back in the playoffs.

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